Worksheets for structuring my thoughts around career changes
July 5, 2018 11:01 AM   Subscribe

I want to switch jobs in the next few months, and I'm looking for a structured way to think about the transition. Something like a worksheet where I list all my previous jobs. What I liked about them. What I didn't like about them. What my strengths are. Does the AskMetafilter community have any resources they enjoyed in the past?

Also, some info about myself. I'm an early 30s software engineer and I've been at my company for 1.5 years. Its not the best fit and the equity side of the compensation isn't competitive so there are definitely other jobs out there that strictly dominate this one. At the same time, there's nothing super exciting or motivating about the alternative jobs: they'd just be jobs. I would be excited about doing something more researchy. But applying to grad school when I'm this far removed from school sounds tough. Plus 5 years is a long time to give up a salary.
posted by earlsofsandwich to Work & Money (5 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
Corny as the title is, I actually got a lot out of What Color Is Your Parachute - and it includes exactly the type of worksheet you're asking for.
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:07 AM on July 5, 2018 [2 favorites]

My partner went back to school after more than a decade away to get her PHD. I finished my undergrad after taking a 20 year break. In both cases I think we've found it was an advantage to have some age and resources behind us.

Also, you don't have to give up a salary. I for sure didn't (I work IT and took only a couple classes a setter until I was done). She is in a hybrid program where part is distance learning, other part is intensive on campus learning (40 hour work weeks). She takes vacation for her classes.

We did take a household income reduction, but we for sure did not give up income entirely. And for what it's worth, she also loves research.

I'm just suggesting you don't have to give up on the idea of continued education if that's what's really appealing to you.

As to the other part of your question, I try to write down one thing I loved about each job I've had, and one thing I will never do again no matter how much I am paid. It gets interesting as you get older what you will decide is no longer worth your time to do.
posted by cjorgensen at 1:10 PM on July 5, 2018 [1 favorite]

AppleOne's Navigating the Hiring Process has a number of worksheets to help you prepare for your career search.
posted by willnot at 3:37 PM on July 5, 2018

It's a little business-y, but this site has a ton of resources for analyzing and planning a potential career change. Purdue also has a really detailed worksheet.
posted by helloimjennsco at 7:01 AM on July 6, 2018

I actually got a lot out of What Color Is Your Parachute -

Seconding this but I'll add that I got lot more out of the What Color is Your Parachute? workbook than the book itself. THe workbook is just a collection of really great exercises that help you reflect, prioritize, and sum up things like your skills, preferred activities, work values, work style, etc. It helped me a lot.
posted by Miko at 7:16 AM on July 6, 2018

« Older Van overheats on idle   |   Help me be kind to my future self! Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.